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Thread: Fine Woodworking DVD vs Online Content

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Fine Woodworking DVD vs Online Content

    As I disclosed in a response today to another post, I recently purchased the Fine Woodworking DVD of the archived magazines (1975-2009). I purchased this only after complaining to their Customer Service about my inability to find some articles on the Online archive.

    I was once a charter member of the Online service, but let it lapse about a year and a half ago. Needing to see some of the video's they now put on their website, I renewed it. They advertise that the Online website contains over 1300 archived articles from the magazine. All of which sounds like quite a lot, but in reality how close to all possible articles is that? Several times I would come up empty on articles that I knew existed. Thinking it was the Online search engines, I just muttered to myself. Recently I was determined to locate an article so I wrote an email to customer service and found out that the Online archive is limited due to copyright issues.

    Long story short I was convinced to purchase the DVD of archived magazine issues because:

    1. Gave me 20% off in advance of the sale they were going to have

    2. Free shipping

    3. The DVD has overcome the copyright issues and all article are on it except for only 26 pages out of 208 issues.

    I am very happy with the DVD. You have thumbnails (or a list if you prefer that) to each magazine. The entire content is there, including the ads. It is just like having the magazine. They just pdf'd the entire issue. The search engine appears to work very well. I had bought the old CD sometime ago and it was terrible. This is a much better product.

    As for the value of the Online membership? I think it may still have value, as most of the newer magazines articles are there. They apparantly have made sure that they own the content of the articles and are avoiding the problem they had. What will really make it worth it will be the new content like the video instruction.

    I do know (in my mind at least), the DVD is worth its cost, especially if you can get it on sale!
    Last edited by Bill Satko; 07-08-2010 at 08:43 PM.
    “When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” - John Ruskin
    “Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” - Oscar Wilde

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Here is a link to be able to purchase it if anyone is interested.

    Bill do you know if you can copy the DVD to hard drive if you wish.? Just thinking aloud the one thing i agree with you about is the search element with these things. I was thinking if its copied to Hard Drive one could let your own operating system index the content and with something like windows 7 search is pretty well improved.

    Sure beats the problem of wading through magazines when you looking for something specific. I find when i do that i invariably end up spending my time reading other things and getting totally distracted.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Rob, the software loads the magazine archives on your hard drive, so the the DVD is not needed after loading. Works faster that way, I suppose. They are there as PDF files, but I believe you would be better off using the applications own front end for browsing and searching the issues. It works very well and is seamless. It is tuned to allow you to view the table contents and hyperlink to the article's content and also to just browse page by page. And as I said before the search ability is very good. I have done searches on specific items of interests and it pulls all the articles associated with the searches. Still have the problem of getting off track and reading other articles.

    I spent last night in the heat with my laptop on my lap (not a good way to cool down), browsing away through the first few issues. Interesting how the content has changed and how the general concept of fine woodworking has changed. In terms of hand work, I think we are in a Renaissance era of available neander information. Those first few issues were a little shaky, but it did not take long for the magazine to find its stride and niche. What I am finding really interesting is the book reviews, which are giving me some leads on good used books to search for.
    “When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” - John Ruskin
    “Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.” - Oscar Wilde

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